Alabaré Welcomes The Duke Of Gloucester
Today our staff, volunteers and Young People who access Andover’s only accredited residential and ‘drop in’ youth service, welcomed The Duke of Gloucester. The Duke was shown around by Rev John Proctor (Chairman of Alabaré) and Paula Philp (Andover Foyer Manager), and officially unveiled the centre’s ‘new look’ plaque, following our recent award of conditional accreditation from the nationally renowned Foyer Federation.
Formally known as The Junction our integrated learning and accommodation service for 16-21 year olds is now known as The Andover Foyer and comprises of The Andover Foyer Drop In Centre and two accommodation sites at River House and Sarum House which provide 26 beds for young people. The Andover Foyer Drop In Centre offers support and training to those both resident at Sarum and River House as well as Young People within the local community.
The Andover Foyer is now part of a network of accredited learning and accommodation centres across the UK known as 'Foyers'. Foyers provide thousands of young people a year with a secure place to live, where skilled staff invest in their personal development, health and wellbeing, reconnect them with learning and move them closer to the world of work.
The Duke spent time meeting the Young People who use the drop in service as well as the residents who live at Sarum and River House. He also sampled some of the services on offer, viewing The Andover Foyer’s music suite, where Service Users can produce their own music, and logging onto the Foyer’s multimedia IT station where Young People can work on job applications, skills and qualifications.
After unveiling our new plaque, The Duke said,
“I think we would all like to think that our young people can grow up in a perfect world where they can become adults and have a perfect career and lead a happy life – but as we know life doesn’t always work out this way, and there are many different reasons why we need to help them. It is splendid that this Foyer is here to help provide them with activities and training to help them be part of their communities and have useful lives.
It is also important to remember that projects like this can’t exist without volunteers. We are lucky to have a tradition in this country of volunteering and people helping each other. It is so important to have a place where they can do that, whether it be regularly to irregularly, and this can be a great help to them as well.
I know that you [Alabaré] have many different projects and are extending your remit, and I would like to congratulate you on what you have achieved in the past and wish you good luck with all that you plan to do in the future.”
Andrew Lord, our Chief Executive said,
“This year is a really important year for us all at Alabaré as we are celebrating our 25th anniversary and it is the icing on our birthday cake to not only have been awarded a conditional accreditation from The Foyer Federation but also to have the support of The Duke of Gloucester, who today, makes the transformation to The Andover Foyer complete, by unveiling our new plaque.”
Vanessa Bedford, our Care and Support Manager for Young People, at Alabaré continued,
“Together, Alabaré and the Foyer Federation are putting the young people who access our services at the heart of our work. Our dedicated team of staff and volunteers are changing lives on a daily basis, helping Young People to realise their potential, build a thriving, independent and sustainable adulthood and become valuable assets to society and it is wonderful that The Duke and his team recognise our commitment to the Young People of Hampshire. We are so grateful for his continued support.”